Stone Poneys star Kenny Edwards has died at the age of 64. The country musician passed away on Wednesday, August 18 just weeks after he was hospitalized in Denver, Colorado. The guitarist/singer, who battled cancer and a blood disorder in recent years, collapsed while on tour with his long time collaborator Karla Bonoff and was air-lifted to a hospital near his home in Santa Barbara, California prior to his death, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Edwards shot to fame after founding the Stone Poneys in the 1960s, the group which launched Linda Ronstadt's career, but the band disbanded shortly after the release of its breakthrough hit, "Different Drum". He went on to form the folk-rock band Bryndle with Bonoff and later worked as a singer/songwriter and guitarist for numerous acts including Stevie Nicks and Don Henley, before releasing his debut solo album in 2002.
Ronstadt has paid tribute to her former bandmate, crediting him with inspiring her own successful career. She says, "He was always a beacon to me. He introduced me to so much stuff, and his opinion always counted a lot to me."
Edwards is survived by his mother.